By Rebecca Shabad - 06/09/14 08:57 AM EDT
Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl wants to be addressed as private first class, not sergeant, The New York Times reported Sunday.
Bergdahl is being treated at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany.
When hospital staff have called Bergdahl sergeant, “He says, ‘Don’t call me that,’ ” one U.S. official told the Times. “‘I didn’t go before the boards. I didn’t earn it.’ ”
His objections to his current rank come as many are questioning whether he intentionally left his base and deserted the military. Over the last week, Bergdahl’s fellow comrades have accused him of being a deserter.
Bergdahl was released on May 31 after being held captive by the Taliban for almost five years. Five Taliban members were released from Guantánamo Bay in exchange.
The Army said last week that it would conduct a high-level investigation into the nature of Bergdahl’s disappearance once his health improves.